Davy Crockett’s Running Frontier

I like to Run Insanely Long & Crazy Distances                                                                                                             Pony Express Trail 100
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Today a picture of me was featured on the ESPN website.  I contributed to an article on the Grand Canyon written by Doug Williams.

espn

The article can be read at: http://espn.go.com/sports/endurance/story/_/id/10870741/endurance-sports-grand-canyon-runs-beautiful-spiritual-problematic

During the terrible heat wave this weekend, I tried to escape the heat by climbing high, above 10,000 feet.  I climbed Cascade Mountain for the first time which towers above Provo/Orem, the next mountain to the south of Mount Timpanogos.   It was 81 degrees when I started in the dark and 103 when I returned to my car.   My Garmin said I climbed more than 11,000 feet.   Here’s a video of the adventure:

This morning I accomplished a run I’ve wanted to do for some time, to run the spine of Lake Mountain north to south.   I started at about 3 a.m. in the Ranches in Eagle Mountain.  I parked my car in front of the house and was off, climbing up to the ridge. The first several miles are pretty easy, a nice ridge road on top, but above Reformation Canyon, the road ends and it turns into a bushwhack.  The best and fasted route is to just stick with the ridge tops, going up and down.  To the summit, the main ridge is on the Eagle mountain side.  There is a lower ridge on the Utah Lake side but well out of the way.

It was great fun going up and down the ridges.  Because of the fire, the ridge tops now are very runnable, no more thick scrub and spider webs.  You can make good time, but I took it easy, enjoying the night and doing plenty of sight-seeing.

Once I reached the true summit about about 7,750, going further, somehow I took a wrong turn.  I was puzzled that somehow I missed noticing the main road….well that is because I started running on the wrong ridge, that would have got me to the right place, but no road and much steeper down.  I figured things out, came down to the main road, ran up and found the right series of roads.  With all the towers up there it is pretty confusing which is the right road, but now I know.  I finally connected to the ridge road to take me all the way to Soldier’s pass, about 18 miles.

Dawn arrived and the light reflecting off of Utah Lake was pretty amazing.  Eventually the road descends into a short canyon on the south end.  There was a shooter there that made me nervous with his handgun, but he noticed me and I ran by.

Once I hit Redwood Road, about the 20-mile mark, I turned and started running home on the pavement.  I went about 8 more miles, and with just six more miles to go, I called home so I wouldn’t be late for the birthday activities.  It was a wonder fun.  Here is the video and photos:

 

Ultrarunner Podcast

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I was privileged to be asked to be part of this week’s Ultrarunner Podcast.  I had no idea what they would ask me.  It was fun.  My son was a little puzzled that apparently we moved to Colorado without telling him, and he lives at home with us.

Listen here

The Jordan River in Utah meanders for more than 50 miles between Utah’s largest natural fresh-water lake (Utah Lake) and the famed Great Salt Lake.  For many years a paved recreational trail has been constructed along the river.  It is named:  Jordan River Parkway Trail.  As far as I can tell, no one has before attempted to run the trail end-to-end in one day.  That was my quest for this urban adventure run. continue reading…

I continue to recover from my broken leg.  It has now been six months.  I now can run cautiously.  It is wonderful to be back on the trails somewhat.  Pain still exists, but I’m trying to be careful and thus far the activity seems to help more than hurt as I see improvement every couple days now.  It seems like most of the pain is soft tissue now, but I’m still not ready to really pound the downhills.   I’ve been able to run three 50+ mile weeks in a row and my fitness is coming back.  I’ve summitted Mount Timpanogos (a 4,500-foot climb in 7 miles) five times in the last few weeks and have progressed to a 3:59 round trip.  It seems like my fitness would allow a 3:30, but I have to back off the pace to keep the pain level down.  A 3:30 pace is fairly typical when I’m in good ultrarunning shape.  I do most of these summits in the dark, so that also limits the pace. continue reading…

First run

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After 21 long weeks, today I ran my first steps pain-free.  It was a slow jog for 1/4 mile, but it was running, and I power-walked a total of 5 miles today.   After a half hour session pounding the elliptical, I went home and my wife said for the first time in five months, “OOOO, you stink.”   That was music to my ears.   I’m still a ways of from running at full speed, but I now have hope again.

Week 22.  Continued progress.   I ran three miles at 3/4th speed.  Pain is the lowest I have felt during running since Dec 30.

It has now been 18 weeks since I have run since stress fracturing my tibia all the way through while running (and finishing) Rocky Raccoon 100.

You know its been awhile since you ran when:

  • Your family compliments you on your toe nails, only one is black.
  • You can’t remember when you bought your last pair of shoes.
  • You wonder if your model of shoe has been discontinued.
  • You see an overweight runner going down the street and you mutter to yourself, “show-off”
  • Nerve endings in your feet are coming to life for the first time in 8 years.
  • You have gained ten pounds but have been eating half as much as usual.
  • You no longer have reoccurring dreams about showing up for races late.
  • You discover that you have three grand children
  • Your grandson can run faster than you…in his walker
  • You start referring to yourself as a former runner

On the bright side, things are progressing.  The fracture was nearly complete through the entire bone.  I now have a bone stimulator machine that seems to be helping.  I can now do short walks nearly pain free.